The author critically evaluates the evolution of the Brazilian mortality pattern during the last fifty years under the framework of the epidemiologic transition theory. The author also discusses mortality determination as a result of economic development and preventive measures. He considers that cardiovascular diseases, neoplasms and injuries are related with environmental and socio-cultural factors and therefore cannot be considered chronic degenerative diseases but preventable ones. These groups of disease are also considered to be unevenly distributed and more prevalent in deprived populations. The author also refers to the simultaneous prevalence of two distinct epidemiologic patterns described in the epidemiologic transition theory, due to the remaining infectious diseases prevalence or to the outbreak of previously eradicated infectious diseases in Brazil, leading to an incomplete epidemiologic transition.
Epidemiologic Transition; Mortality and Morbidity Determinants; Mortality Pattern